On Your Mark, Get Set, Develop!

Oxford Handbook of Austrian Economics, Forthcoming

Posted: 30 Sep 2012

See all articles by Scott Alex Beaulier

Scott Alex Beaulier

Mercer University

Daniel J. Smith

Middle Tennessee State University - Department of Economics and Finance

Date Written: September 29, 2012

Abstract

One of the lingering questions for development economists is the question of economic transition and whether or not development can be promoted by a strong political leader. Earlier writings on leadership and economic development tend to fall into one of two camps: (1) Leaders matter and can contribute positively to economic growth; or (2) leaders seldom have positive effects and, at best, can avoid doing a great deal of harm. This article establishes a third option — a middle ground position — between these two views. Good leadership can, indeed, have a positive effect on economic growth, but only during the initial moment when economic reform is “up for grabs.” Once the opportunity to implement sweeping reform has passed, interests become entrenched and the opportunity for growth enhancing reform passes. Bad leaders, on the other hand, can hamper economic growth in periods well beyond the ideal reform moment.

Keywords: Economic Development, Leadership, Economic Growth, Reform, Political Economy

JEL Classification: O21, B53, F54

Suggested Citation

Beaulier, Scott Alex and Smith, Daniel J., On Your Mark, Get Set, Develop! (September 29, 2012). Oxford Handbook of Austrian Economics, Forthcoming. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2154284

Scott Alex Beaulier

Mercer University ( email )

1400 Coleman Avenue
Macon, GA 31207

Daniel J. Smith (Contact Author)

Middle Tennessee State University - Department of Economics and Finance ( email )

MTSU Box 27
1301 E. Main St.
Murfreesboro, TN 37132-0001
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.danieljosephsmith.com/

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
489
PlumX Metrics